Americas

A bicycle is parked under pictures of Cuba's former president Fidel Castro, Raul Castro, brother of Fidel and Cuba's president, and revolutionary hero Ernesto 'Che' Guevara (L-R) in an office in Havana December 19, 2014. With Washington agreeing to restore full diplomatic ties that were cut in the early 1960s, Cuba's communist government may not be able to blame its old Cold War nemesis so readily. Cuba has repeatedly sought to dispel the idea that it secretly wanted the embargo in place, saying if the Americans believed that they should challenge Cuba by lifting it.

Enrique De La Osa/Reuters

A bicycle is parked under pictures of Cuba’s former president Fidel Castro, Raul Castro, brother of Fidel and Cuba’s president, and revolutionary hero Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara in an office in Havana on Friday. Washington has agreed to restore full diplomatic ties that were cut in the early 1960s, with its old Cold War nemesis

A man dressed as Santa Claus zip lines away from Sugar Loaf mountain after riding on top of a cable car in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014. The cable car company surprised tourists with a visit from Santa to celebrate Christmas.

Felipe Dana/AP

A man dressed as Santa Claus zip lines away from Sugar Loaf mountain after riding on top of a cable car in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Thursday. The cable car company surprised tourists with a visit from Santa to celebrate Christmas

Alan Gross is greeted with hugs after arriving at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland in this White House handout photo...Alan Gross is greeted with hugs after arriving at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland in this December 17, 2014 White House handout photo. The United States and Cuba agreed on Wednesday to restore diplomatic ties that Washington severed more than 50 years ago, and President Barack Obama called for an end to the long economic embargo against its old Cold War enemy.  Gross spent 5 years as a prisoner in Cuba. REUTERS/Lawrence Jackson/White House/Handout via Reuters  (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS

Lawrence Jackson/White House/Reuters

Alan Gross, an American imprisoned in Cuba for five years, arrives at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. The US and Cuba agreed on Wednesday to restore diplomatic ties that Washington severed more than 50 years ago, and President Barack Obama called for an end to the long economic embargo against its old enemy. 

A man waits in line for one of 5,000 holiday food bags provided at Glide Memorial Church in the Tenderloin neighborhood in San Francisco, California December 17, 2014. Glide's foundation serves a cross-section of homeless and low-income people, and provides a variety of services including free meals.

Robert Galbraith/Reuters

A man waits in line for one of 5,000 food bags provided at Glide Memorial Church in the Tenderloin neighborhood in San Francisco, California on Wednesday

Traffic moves slowly across the Golden Gate Bridge in the high winds and rain Thursday, Dec. 11, 2014, in this view from Sausalito, Calif.  A storm expected to be one of the windiest and rainiest in five years swept across the San Francisco Bay Area on Thursday, knocking out power to tens to thousands and delaying travel by air, train and ferry. Pacific Gas & Electric is reporting outages are widespread across the Bay Area due to weather, but officials weren't immediately available to give a specific number of outages.

Eric Risberg/AP

Traffic moves slowly across the Golden Gate Bridge in the high winds and rain on Thursday, in this view from Sausalito, California. A storm expected to be one of the worst in five years swept across the San Francisco Bay Area on Thursday, knocking out power and delaying travel by air, train and ferry.

A woman walks between palm trees before sunrise on Arpoador beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Dec. 11, 2014.

Felipe Dana/AP

A woman walks between palm trees before sunrise on Arpoador beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Thursday

Street artist Cezar Vanuty, with Santa hat, performs with knives on a street in Brasilia, Brazil, Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014.

Eraldo Peres/AP

Street artist Cezar Vanuty, wearing a Santa hat, performs with knives on a street in Brasilia, Brazil on Tuesday

Tyler Corrington of Hastings, Minn. competes in the saddle bronc riding during the fifth go-round of the National Finals Rodeo at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas

David Becker/Las Vegas Review Journal/AP

Tyler Corrington of Hastings, Minnesota competes in the saddle bronco riding during the fifth go-round of the National Finals Rodeo at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas

A police officer walks among crosses planted by the NGO Rio de Paz (Peace Rio) on Copacabana beach, in memory of police officers killed in Rio de Janeiro December 9, 2014. Rio de Paz placed 152 black crosses symbolising the same number of police officers killed in the last two years in Rio de Janeiro, according to NGO.

Sergio Moraes/Reuters

A police officer walks among crosses planted by the NGO Rio de Paz (Peace Rio) on Copacabana beach today in memory of police officers killed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Rio de Paz placed 152 black crosses symbolising the same number of police officers killed in the last two years in Rio de Janeiro, according to NGO.

Members of the glaciology unit of Peru's national water authority walk on the Pastoruri glacier in Huaraz, Peru, Thursday, Dec. 4, 2014. The glaciology unit is studying the measurement of ice thickness. According to Alejo Cochachin, coordinator of the glaciology unit, the Pastoruri glacier retreated 576 meters between 1980 and 2014. Peru's glaciers have lost more one-fifth of their mass in just three decades, and the 70 percent Peruís 30 million people who inhabit the countryís Pacific coastal desert, depend on glacial runoff for hydropower and to irrigate crops, meaning their electricity and long-term food security could also be in peril. Higher alpine temperatures are killing off plant and animal species in cloud forests and scientists predict Pacific fisheries will suffer. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

Rodrigo Abd/AP

Members of the glaciology unit of Peru’s national water authority walk on the Pastoruri glacier in Huaraz, Peru. The glaciology unit is measuring ice thickness and according to Alejo Cochachin at the unit, the Pastoruri glacier retreated 576 metres between 1980 and 2014